Berkshire’s girls’ basketball team bid adieu to its home gym with a 48-31 win over visiting Mogadore in a Division III sectional semifinal on Wednesday.
The 10th-seeded Badgers, who advanced to play at No. 8 Rootstown on Saturday, will play next season in the gym at the new Berkshire campus opening in 2022. The old school had been the Badger’s den since the school opened in 1936. The gym was added in 1975.
“It’s been kind of a point of emphasis for us all season to protect our home court all season because it was going to be the end of the era in the gym,” said Berkshire coach James Bosley. “Originally, it was planned to move to the new building mid-season, so we thought we would be closing it out with our win over Chagrin Falls. The best part of this season at our home games is the atmosphere created by having the pep band and cheerleaders be at some games. Combine that with our parents, community, and students that have just supported us at home all season and it’s been really special for the girls.”
Mogadore’s Amber Morris got the Wildcats off to a great start with a seven-point first quarter. The Wildcats led, 10-8, before the Badgers found their groove.
Berkshire used a 17-8 second-quarter run to take a 25-18 lead into the break.
“We got off to a little bit of a slow start on offense but made a few adjustments and the girls just played well together,” Bosley said. “Defensively, the girls were really focused on what Mogadore was trying to do and made it difficult for them. We had a really strong second quarter on both ends of the floor to build a lead at the half.”
Maddy Triskett scored six of her 10 points during that second-quarter run and Lydia Kastor, who led the team with 17 points, scored eight in the third quarter as the Badgers pushed their lead to 36-26.
“Lydia took control of the offense scoring-wise, but her just being a threat on all three levels makes defenses constantly have to be aware of her,” Bosley said. “That’s when Maddy Triskett steps up. Maddy had six of her 10 in the second quarter run we went on.”
Berkshire closed out the game by outscoring Mogadore in the fourth quarter, 12-5.
Kastor also pulled down four rebounds and added two assists.
Triskett finished with 10 points, four rebounds, three steals, and was 5-for-7 from the floor. Kylie Neumore contributed with seven points, three rebounds, and two steals, and Hayley Stoddard scored six points with 10 rebounds and a pair of steals. Laney Wadsworth pitched in with four points and Natalie Hering and Caroline Kuchling both scored two.
“A lot of our key plays were set up by controlling the rebounds and limiting them to one chance at the hoop,” Bosley said. “It was a group effort controlling their guard, (Brook) McIntyre, but Neumore, Kuchling, and Kastor all did a good job on her the whole game. It’s also nice seeing Hayley Stoddard back on the court. She ended up with 10 rebounds and made some nice plays defensively for us.”
With the win, the Badgers improved to 13-10 overall. They’ll face a Rootstown team on Saturday that has a loss to Crestwood, a team the Badgers beat twice during the regular season.
“It’s always nice to win tournament games,” Bosley said. “It’s the point of the season that everything before now shapes the team you are. We played a tough schedule this season to help prepare us for games like tonight, so getting to play again is all that matters.”